Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Smile. You are beautiful...

Do we get confidence, or are we already confident?  This was my fortune from the Mandarin yesterday.  It made me think because if someone were to ask me about my confidence right now, I'd have to say that I am not very confident in my own body.  Confidence means different things though.  I have never been confident in my looks.  I've spent the majority of my life morbidly obese. I  have however, been confident in my job and the knowledge that I have gained through years of experience working with the hard to serve population that I do.  

Back to self confidence though.  I am only now starting to switch the way I think of myself.  It's a slow process, moving away from "fat mode".  When I walk into a room, or onto the subway, or out in public and get looked at or smiled at by someone, I automatically think they are laughing at me. Judging me.  I think that they know my secret and can tell that I'm a fraud.  A morbidly obese person living in a smaller body.  Lynda from Living the Life left a comment on my last post (And thanks to all who left such complimentary comments regarding my outfit.  Way to boost a girl's self-esteem!) that also got me thinking...

The dinner looked great and you looked amazing!! Wear that makeup more often - after all the hard work you've put in you deserve to look that beautiful. I was thinking that people (read: overweight people) will see you out looking like that and think "oh that woman has no idea what it's like to have to diet". You will be seen now as a confident, slim woman who has never had a weight problem in her life.

I always assume that everyone I come into contact with knows about my unhealthy past.  I assume they can guess by seeing my flaws.  And trust me, I have tons of them.  But they are only blatantly obvious to me.  A few things happened on Monday that made me realize that no one that I just met would know anything about how I used to look unless I told them.  I work with disadvantaged youth.  On Monday I was in the reception area of my building with a current client that I met maybe three months ago.  While I'm saying goodbye to that youth, I notice a young person I previously worked with, but haven't seen in over a year.  So about 70 pounds ago.  I approach that youth to say hello and he just gives me a questioning look.  Then he freaks out and says, "OMG!  I barely recognize you".  My current client looks back and has a confused look on her face.  She didn't say anything, and walked off, but looked back as he loudly talked about how I look completely different.  I know she's going to have a lot of questions for me the next time I see her.  She's never known me obese.

I was at a committee meeting on the same day and a co-worker who recently got back from maternity leave asked me how much weight I lost.  I told her 125 pounds and the two newest members of the committee looked completely shocked.  They have also never known me as an obese person.  I showed my "Indian Status" card at Walmart last night while I was grocery shopping.  Showing it means I get some of the tax taken off. The checkout girl looked at the card, looked at me and said, "Kudos to you!  You look great!"  I usually get questioned as to whether or not the photo is really me, and mentioned that to her, but she said, "I can tell it's you.  You were pretty in the picture, you're beautiful now."  That was one of the nicest compliments ever! Especially since I was wearing yoga pants and no make-up!

I guess, for me, confidence is something that I'm gaining in time.  I have confidence in other areas of my life.  I'm confident as a mother, as a friend, as a daughter, as a wife, as a youth worker.  I'm not confident as a runner.  That will develop in time.  And my looks and body?  A work in progress for sure.  So back to Lynda's comment.  Although others may see me as confident and slim because they don't know my past, I am far from feeling that way myself.  When I see myself in a reflection, I still do a double take because I see a stranger looking back at me.  I know the person I see looks good, but I still struggle seeing myself the way others see me.  I'm expecting to wake up one day from this wonderful dream and return to my former life of hypertension and obesity. Unless I'm looking in a mirror, I still see myself the way I look in my mind.  And in my mind, I still weigh 290 pounds.

Wouldn’t it be powerful if you fell in love with yourself so deeply that you would do just about anything if you knew it would make you happy? This is precisely how much life loves you and wants you to nurture yourself. The deeper you love yourself, the more the universe will affirm your worth. Then you can enjoy a lifelong love affair that brings you the richest fulfillment from inside out. - Alan Cohen

Sunday, April 28, 2013

The post where we got treated to dinner!

Friday was quite the eventful day.  I had an early morning massage, then I got fitted for my orthotics, then I went into the office to do student interviews, then I went to physio to get my feet stripped which hurt like (insert expletive here), then I finally made it home past seven to eat my dinner.  A busy day overall!  By Friday night I was exhausted, but not enough NOT to play Scrabble on my phone.  I downloaded it while I was at the symposium on Thursday and have since become addicted.  I'm not gonna lie.

Saturday was just as busy.  It was a scale back week for my half marathon training.  I was only suppose to do 12K for my long run.  My hubby had to do some volunteer drives at 9am, so I was out of the house early to complete my long run.  I was home before nine and then I readied myself for the day, ate lunch and took Jules to a school friend's FOUR hour birthday party in a park. Although the parents said I could leave and come back for the swimming component, I didn't feel comfortable leaving him with a bunch of strangers.  That was a bit torturous.  But hubby stepped up and took over for the swimming part of the party.  Thank goodness.  I don't have a bathing suit. The one I wore last year was miles too big on me and I got rid of it.  When I tried it on last month, the top did not fit at all.  You could see stuff if I moved around.  I was going to go swimming if I had to...in running gear!  While hubby and Jules swam, I walked Finn 6K.  Then got home just in time to get ready for dinner out while hubby went to get our babysitter.

We were treated to a lovely dinner out with friends last night.  Dave and Liz took us out to a steak house called the Keg (I know those living in Ontario know the Keg, but I explain for everyone else). Dave and Liz are dear friends of ours.  There's always reason to celebrate with them.  We don't see them nearly enough, and in four more months, they are welcoming a bundle of baby joy into their lives!  I'm super excited for them and can't wait to meet their son or daughter.  It was also nice to get out for a night with adults only for a change!

The four of us at the Keg.  Liz has a baby bump!

The Keg was a great choice for us to eat at.  We are all pretty much following similar diets.  I was able to stay on plan (with the exception of bacon bits on my salad).  I had a wedge salad with oil and vinegar for dressing, a New York strip loin steak with asparagus, mixed veggies and sauteed mushrooms.  I also had a glass of red wine while we waited to be seated.  I  was pretty stuffed when we were done.  It was a lot of food!  And really yummy.  I haven't had a good steak in ages. It was a real nice treat from some great friends!

My wedge salad.

My entree.  I washed this down with LOTS of water.

Last night I got to play a little bit of dress up.  I never go out, so I thought I'd attempt some night-time make-up like Kristjan taught me.  It was fun to play around and I think I did a pretty decent job.  I did smokier eyes like he showed me and it did make me look a bit more polished for a night-time look.  I also wore a printed blouse that a friend gave me because it was too big for her.  I wasn't sure how I would wear it, but I think I did a good job pairing it with my dark denim, plum jacket and pointy heels.  It was fun dressing it up with some accessories too.  All in all, I had fun dressing up last night.  I think I'm finally getting the hang of this fashion thing!

The entire look taken from
an awkward angle.
Close up of the face.  My bangs are getting long,
but I kinda like them.

This morning I was up early again so I could run with my 10K clinic.  It was a beautiful morning for a run.  Crisp and sunny.  We ran at 8:30 am and we had quite a large group come out.  Sixteen people not including Monica and I.  We did a 6K LSD (long slow distance) with the group, then Monica and I tacked on an extra 4K at the end.  All in all I ran 46K last week.  Tomorrow is supposed to be a rest day, but I think I may have to get up and do a quick 6K before getting ready for work.  I love running in the morning and it's just such a good start to my day.  Rest may have to wait till Friday!  I ran six days last week and think I like that routine better than my usual five days.  

I almost forgot,  I got my orthotics on Friday.  I've been wearing them around the house and out for short errands to get used to them.  They do feel awkward because there's a pronounced lump higher in my arch.  It's supposed to keep my toes straight which will keep them from curling and prevent them from cramping.  I'm not supposed to run with them for another couple of weeks, and then I'm just supposed to wear them for short runs.  I'm not looking forward to running 18K this coming weekend.  I already know that my toes are gonna cramp something horrible.  As I get faster and my feet hit the ground more frequently, my toes cramp even earlier.  I may just have to stop half way and walk it out a bit before I run the second half.  I was told that I should be able to wear the orthotics for the Niagara Women's Half Marathon on June 2nd.  I hope so. I'm still hoping to run a 2:15 half or better.  

I'm off to read...or play Scrabble.  Well if I have to be completely honest, I'm off to play Scrabble.  I really should read because the eBook that I borrowed from the library is going to expire soon.  And I do need to find out if Kate and Aidan are going to make it or not.  I mean they've already "made it", but is it going to be forever?  Decisions, decisions.  I should do my taxes!  I'm getting money back and I need it.  I've had nothing but car repairs this month.  Tomorrow after grocery shopping I will get the taxes done.  Maybe I should just go to bed.  I'm making no sense now and just talking gibberish.  Bed it is!  G'night.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

The post where I don't have too much to say...

The last two days have been pretty dull. Other than my two clinic runs (which I enjoyed immensely), life has been pretty mundane.  I was at a symposium for work the past two days, and even though it was nice to get out of the office and away from clients for a bit, I'm glad to be back to "normal" tomorrow.  I have three appointments tomorrow that all have to do with running maintenance.  I have a sports massage first thing in the morning, then right after that, I'm off to get fitted for my orthotics, then it's off to the office for a half day before I head back home for my physio appointment in the evening. I'm actually glad tomorrow's a rest day. I haven't had one of those since last Friday.

The cost for the symposium included breakfast and lunch both days.  I made sure I was prepared from the get go.  I ate breakfast before I got there which was a real good idea.  I assumed they would at least have some fruit for breakfast, but it was all pastries.  Three long tables full of pastries.  And barrels full of juice.  Nothing I could eat.  But it was all good.  I wasn't hungry because I ate prior to my arrival.  I had no idea what the meals would be.  They asked if there were any dietary restrictions and I said I was dairy, grain and sugar free.  Me and about 50 other people got nutritional accommodations.  They made us dairy and gluten free meat and veggies and salad.

There were three of these tables set up.   Two years ago I
would have eaten a few of these with a few juices!  And I
would have gone through the Tim Horton's drive through
for a breakfast sandwich prior to my arrival!

It was Mexican the first day and we got chicken strips with peppers, salad and fruit.  Everyone else got fajitas and lots of creamy salads and rice, peas, corn, tortilla chips and all the toppings.  One of my co-workers kept apologizing to me, which I didn't get.  For some reason, she thought I was upset because I couldn't eat what they were eating.  I told her I could eat what they were eating.  I can actually eat whatever I want.  I just choose not to.  It wasn't part of my clean eating plan, and I knew just by looking at the food, that it would upset my stomach terribly.  So not worth it!  People think that I'm denying myself food I really want.  I honestly didn't want that food.  I brought a Paleo lunch just in case there was nothing for me to eat.  I ate my lunch after my clinic run for dinner.

Yesterday's lunch.  I took the wrong salad, but dutifully picked
out the feta cheese...

Today I got salad, roast beef, chicken and grilled veggies.  All gluten and dairy free again.  Not too shabby since I ate my fill and was quite satisfied.  I still brought a lunch (just in case) and ate it before my clinic tonight since my clinic started at 7:15 pm.  I must have drank an ocean of water over the past couple of days.   I spent a lot of time in the bathroom.  I honestly don't think I can drink too much water.  I sweat it all out when I run.  And I run a lot!  This week will have me clocking 50K by the time everything is said and done.

My clinic is going well.  The last couple of runs have been rainy, so attendance hasn't been too great.  Looks like we'll  have to give the old "We are runners. And runners run in all kinds of weather" speech.  If I haven't mentioned it before, which I know I have, I run with a great group of people!  They are at different paces, but Monica and I are committed to helping one and all reach their running goals.  Who knows, maybe some will be in my next half marathon/marathon clinic at the end of June.  It may sound like a lofty goal now, but you can never aim too high!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Jazzy and Leigh's High School Reunion

My requisite morning running photo.
I think the morning sun makes me wanna run!

This morning started out like any other morning.  I ran.  Yesterday was supposed to be my rest day, but I got up at 5:30 am and just felt like running.  So I did.  I won't get a true rest day till Friday because tomorrow and Thursday are clinic runs.  Which means I will have run six days in a row.  It's all good though.  I feel good during my runs.  My hamstring is a non-issue and I'm getting faster.  Yesterday's 6K was at a 6:29 pace.  I don't normally run that fast by myself.  Since it's becoming my regular pace, I'm ready to kick it up a notch.  I'm going to start interval training in a week or so.  And Friday I get my orthotics!  I'm excited, but nervous that it will take me some time to get used to them.  Looking forward to running sans crampy toes.

Funny thing happened this morning.  I decided to weigh myself since I've been following Paleo for a full week.  My weight has not budged since I gained at my March 27th weigh-in.  Last week I weighed in at 168.  The same number I've been stagnant at for almost a month.  I've been eating nuts, seeds, fruit, starchy veggies and of course meat this past week.  Imagine my surprise when I got on the scale and saw this!

If I'm gonna do scale pictures, I'm gonna need regular pedicures!

I lost a pound.  Funny that since I had a way more restrictive diet for the weeks prior to me beginning Paleo. Go figure!  Maybe I needed to switch it up or something?  Not sure why the loss this week since I'm sure I've eaten more since I announced I was on maintenance.  Oh well. Losing weight without even trying?  Worse things could definitely happen!  Just goes to show how different my body and metabolism is now as opposed to then.  I used to claim that I had a snails pace slow metabolism.  The truth is that I abused it and once I introduced healthy foods and exercise to my body, it began to work overtime for me.  We work together like a well oiled machine now.  That is exactly why it is not even remotely difficult for me to eat a regimented diet plan like Paleo or Dr. Poon and not cheat.  It's just not worth it.  I will never abuse my metabolism (or my body) again.

My girl Dawn is doing the Ride to Conquer Cancer in June.  That's a 200K bike ride!  She's making these great necklaces and bracelets that are fully tax receiptable (don't think that's a word, but you know what I mean).  I ordered one from her and got a ton of compliments on it!  I even got her an order today.  If you know me in real life and you want to give your mom an awesome Mother's Day gift where all the proceeds go directly to cancer research, I can hook you up!  They can be custom made in many different colors.

Believe necklace $40, Believe bracelet $25

I almost forgot that on May 4th is my high school reunion.  I'm definitely going.  I'll have to get an outfit to wear for the occasion.  It's a daytime and family affair.  I was obese in high school.  Not morbidly obese yet, but still pretty unhealthy and awkward.  I had tortoiseshell glasses until I was 17 when my mother finally let me switch to contacts.  It will be weird seeing people I haven't seen in 25 years.  I was pretty quiet and shy in high school.  I only had one good girlfriend that I hung with (Jasmine...who I haven't seen for a couple of years and should really touch base with). Always trying to be part of the cool crowd but never fitting in.  It was a hard time for me.  I had no boyfriends in high school and no prospect of a boyfriend.  Ironically, my hubby and I went to the same high school and he was very popular with the girls.  We didn't really associate then.  I was better friends with my brother-in-law.  If I would have suggested to anyone that I would end up marrying my husband 14 years after we graduated, I would have been laughed outta town.  I'm sure no one would have dreamed that I would end up marrying the object of many school girl crushes from 1986 - 1988!

The next two days will be a true test.  But I love a challenge!  I'm attending a symposium at a hotel where breakfast and lunch will be served.  My size 7 pants that I bought a couple of weeks ago are getting looser in the butt and upper thigh area, the only place I still need to lose.  That right there is motivation to eat on plan.  I will be prepared though.  I will bring some Paleo friendly veggies, fruits, seeds and hard boiled eggs.  I'll leave them in my car just in case I need to step out and grab something. Preparation is key!  Failure to plan is planning to fail.  And failure is not an option!

Not the best picture of me.
Julien wanted to take it and made me
promise to post it.  Those are size 7 pants!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Breaking up is hard to do

Cold but happy to be back home after my 16K!

Saturday morning's run was a shock to the system.  I ran Thursday night in VERY warm conditions (27C), rested Friday, and woke up Saturday morning to 1C with gale force winds and flurries.  I had my long run (16K) yesterday and I did the same route I did the week before.  Up the escarpment to the end of the trail and back.  Going up the escarpment wasn't too bad.  It was sheltered.  But as soon as I got to the top of the escarpment and ran across an open field, the winds and cold really made it difficult to run.  It felt like I was running on the spot sometimes!  Gale forced winds and crampy toes aside, I ran at a pretty decent clip.  I kept up a 6:37 pace for 16K.  I was surprised because I normally don't run that fast on my own.  Must mean I'm getting faster!

After I cleaned up after my run yesterday, Hubby the Boy and I went to Value Village.  Julien and I are reading the Captain Underpants series and we were missing one book.  I was sure that VV would have the missing book, and sure enough they delivered.  Hubby is in desperate need of some new clothes and he looked around for 10 minutes before coming back to where I was with Julien to announce that there was nothing to be bought!  I told him that I'd go and look and within 15 minutes, I had 8 shirts for him that we ended up buying.  Name brand tops too like Banana Republic, Gap, Tommy Hilfiger.  I'm telling you, I missed my calling.  I should become a thrift store personal shopper!

Yesterday was a pretty lazy day.  I guess my week of running and my busy life in general caught up to me.  I was lying in bed reading around 8pm, Julien came to join me around 8:30, and before I knew it, we were both asleep.  I woke a few times before midnight before calling it a night for good. My early night called for an early morning.  I was up at my regular time of 5:30 this morning, but I felt totally rejuvenated!

I was at the Running Room for 8:30 this morning.  I lead my 10K clinic in a 5K run.  What a great group of people!  Different groups at different paces made for a problem solving run, but I did it.  I was solo this morning because Monica was running the Toronto Yonge Street 10K (which incidentally she kicked ass at...yes I stalked her results).  We did an out and back route, so I stayed near the front for the first 2.5K, then after I clocked the distance and figured out where the turning point was, I took up the rear with a slower runner.  We came up with a plan to work on her speed and I'm confident I can help her improve her pace before the end of the clinic.  She has running endurance, but just needs to work on getting faster.  Running with someone who will push her, will definitely help.  She can actually run faster than she thinks, she just needs a bit of encouragement which will build her confidence and get her there.  Challenge accepted!

He really just wants the Happy Meal toy...

Today was a fun day with Julien.  He got his monthly, or in this case bi-monthly treat at McDonald's today.  We haven't been for at least two months.  I don't encourage him to ever eat at McDonald's, but once in a while, he'll remember to ask and I'll give in and let him have lunch there. I get coffee, because it's actually not too bad.  Better than Tim Horton's in my opinion.  And cheaper. While he's playing in the play place, I can get as many free coffees as I want!  Let me clarify.  I could get free coffees, but I think I only did that once.  Nice to know the option is there if I want it.

Afterwards Jules helped me grocery shop for the week.  Lots of chicken thighs because they were on sale this week.  And I got a good deal on extra lean ground beef too.  My slow cooker was working at full force this weekend.  Bolognese sauce yesterday to go with my spaghetti squash, and curried chicken with rutabaga today.  I also stocked up on sunflower seeds, dried prunes and figs.  Told hubby that this is what  he snacking on for the week.  He was not amused.  But I also got us tons of fresh fruit, so he can't complain!  It's not easy to give up everything you're used to. He'll get used to it in time.  I certainly did and I feel so much better for it.

It's been a full week without artificial sweeteners.  I'm not sure if sleeping has anything to do with sweeteners, but I find my sleeps are much better.  I'm sleeping deeper which means I'm better rested.  I'll blame my lack of sleep in the past on the sweeteners. Why not? I blamed everything on processed sugar and carbs in the past.  I might as well give artificial sweeteners a bad rap too! For anyone reading this who thinks they can't  give up certain foods in their life, think of me and know that if I can do it, so can you.  If you had told me two years ago that I would swear off processed carbs, refined sugar, dairy, and all the other garbage I loved and thought I could never live without, I would have laughed you outta town.  Trust me, it can be done and all it takes is determination and the desire to be the healthiest you can be.  I've never felt better in my entire life and there's nothing I could eat now that would make it worth going back to where I was nineteen months ago. Absolutely nothing!  And all the former crap I ate?  We've broken up for good, and we are never ever ever ever getting back together (I know, totally cheesy but I couldn't resist)!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Waiting for prosperity to pay a visit

My fortune from yesterday.
Don't worry;  prosperity will knock on
your door soon.

I just got back from instructing the first session of my 10K clinic.  It was a great evening and we had a pretty large group.  Fifteen people are registered with 13 participants who showed up tonight. There could be a few more registrants.  Some people trickle in over the first few weeks.  This is the biggest group of people I have ever instructed.  Thank goodness I have Monica to assist me. It's hard to keep up with such a big group where everyone's running at different paces.

Tonight was a 4K run.  I ran with the people up front, and Monica was holding up the rear.  Then I had to fall back to check on the middle people, then catch up to the fast runners again, then fall back again.  I got a good tempo run in tonight.  I did my fastest 4K ever according to my Nike + Running app.  No wonder since I had to sprint back up to the front once I checked on the middle and end people.  We have a "no person left behind" policy in my clinics and Monica was way back with a lone runner.  So managing twelve runners at different paces became challenging.  I'll figure it out though.  This clinic is not about pace, it's about endurance.  I just need to get this group to 10K!

There were a few familiar faces in my clinic. People I've seen at other clinics.  One person recognized me from the Steven and Chris Show.  It was a touch awkward because I was caught off guard and didn't know what to say when she mentioned it.  I handled it the only way I knew how.  I thanked her for watching and changed the subject.  I'm excited about instructing this clinic because it's been about five months since I taught my last Learn to Run clinic and I missed instructing.  I'm really looking forward to getting to know this group of people.

The weather is crazy!  I was up this morning at 5:30 to get a run in, and it was 3C out.  When I walked the Boy to school, it was about 5C and he wore a spring jacket, a hat and gloves.  By noon it was in the mid-teens.  When I was driving home it was in the mid twenties, and for our run tonight, it was 27C.  I was sweating like a fiend!  I really need some spring/summer running gear stat!  Although, I think today was a total fluke and it will return to seasonal or below seasonal by tomorrow.  The overnight low is supposed to be 15C.  I'm opening my windows.

My dinner last night.  Pork medallions, cumin carrots, garlic and
lemon rapini.  And I had a glass of red wine while I cooked!

The Paleo diet is going well.  I failed to explain what it is to those who don't know what the plan consists of so here it is in a nutshell.  Lean meat, seafood, fish, eggs, vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds, oils from plants and fish, tea, coffee, water, red wine!  There are different variations that are more strict (ie: no starchy tubers, alcohol or coffee), but I'm gonna eat sweet potato, drink coffee and red wine.  Shoot me!  Basically, if you can eat it raw, it's Paleo.  I would strongly caution against eating meat, seafood, fish (unless it's sashimi) and eggs raw.  There's no dairy, no grains (corn), no refined sugars, no legumes (beans, peas, peanuts), no processed meats, no artificial sweeteners.  I'm still having natural peanut butter, and cream in my coffee.  So I would say I'm committing to a 90% Paleo diet.  Can't give hubby a percentage.  He's failing fast.  I found a Tim Horton's bag in his car today which means he had some sort of baked good.  If you're interested, here's the link to the website of Dr. Cordain.  He's written several books on the Paleo diet and is cited as the "founder" of the Paleo diet.

I guess with the warmer weather coming, I'm going to have to head back to Reitmans and get some spring/summer clothes.  I'm still drawn to Value Village.  I love finding brand name stuff in great shape for really cheap!  It's an addiction, like running, but detrimental to my wallet.  Even though the clothes are inexpensive, if I go there too much, it can become a problem.  I love finding blazers/jackets.  I have a lot but refuse to give any up.  Maybe prosperity will knock on my door soon and I'll be able to quit my job and spend my days frequenting every Value Village I can find.  I could open a second hand/consignment store and call it "Love me Two Times".  I may not make any money, but man that would be awesomely fun!  I just need to win the lottery now.  I'll get right on that by starting to play the lottery.  With my fortune from yesterday in hand, this cockamamie plan is bound to work!

My "mostly" Value Village outfit.
Blazer, burgundy shirt, belt and boots
all VV.  Jeans and necklace, Reitmans.
The VV items cost $30, Reitmans items
cost $70.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

The post that needs no title

I donned my last race shirt and ran for Boston
this morning.

I don't even know what to say.  I think it has all been said.  My heart is heavy and I feel numb.  I'm not going to dwell too long on the tragedy that happened in Boston yesterday except to say that when I heard that an 8-year-old boy died waiting for his dad to cross the finish line, I instantly thought of Julien at the finish line of the Chilly Half Marathon this past March ringing the cow bell as I crossed.  He was so happy to see me and I could see the pride in his face. Such a jubilant time for runners and spectators alike marred by senseless violence. My thoughts and prayers are with the many victims and their families.

Yesterday I did my first grocery shop for my Paleoish lifestyle. I'm not 100% Paleo, but I'd say I'm between 90 and 95 percent Paleo.  I still have cream in my coffee, and natural peanut butter (before) and energy gels/gummies (during) long runs.  Hubby's about 70% Paleo.  He still wanted orange juice, diet pop and asked for other stuff that I didn't buy (whole wheat pasta, cold cuts).  I only got the OJ and diet pop so I didn't cut him off cold turkey.  He has eaten similar to me for the past year, but still had processed carbs once or twice a day.  He's trying to cut down to no processed carbs and I guess I can't expect him to give up everything all at once.  I'm giving him a couple more weeks, then no more crap!  I'm used to eating this way minus a few things I'd have once in a while (cheese, yogurt, artificial sweeteners, sugar-free candy and sugar-free pop).  I was never really attached to any of that stuff so I'm committed to eating as clean as I can.

My loot from yesterday.  The bananas are for the hubby and
boy, but everything else is fair game!

I bought a ton of produce, fruit, eggs, lean pork, canned salmon, and natural peanut butter I got on sale for $2/750g.  That was a deal.  It will take me a couple of months to get through one jar since I only have it on Sundays before long runs.  I already had chicken breast and extra lean ground beef in the freezer from the week before, so I am set.  I also bought a honking big bag of cumin which is quickly becoming my favorite spice.  I love it on carrots and on cabbage.  I price matched more than half of what I bought yesterday and saved about $30.  It is not expensive to eat healthy!

In my last post I talked about not wanting to get weighed in at the Pickering clinic anymore.  In hindsight, none of that has to do with Dr. Stephen.  I was frustrated with him, yes.  But don't get me wrong, I liked him very much as my doctor.  He was honest with me and didn't sugar coat anything about what my former lifestyle was doing to my health and my body  I appreciated and respected him for that.  I did not need to be coddled.  I needed the cold hard truth in order to succeed at my lifestyle change and he delivered.

I only got weighed in at the Pickering clinic because it's on the way to Peterborough where I see a client bi-weekly.  I'm closing that client at the end of April.  Otherwise it would be 1.5 hours out of my way and I'd only be able to swing that on the weekend.  I'm not giving up a Saturday away from the boy to get weighed in.  The weekends are short enough as it is.  A new clinic  is opening in Toronto sometime in May, and I think I'll have my file transferred there.  It's only a ten minute drive from my office and I can certainly coordinate a morning maintenance weigh-in once a month.  I like the accountability that it gives me.

A reader from the Dr. Poon support page on Facebook asked me about loose skin after weight-loss.  I've touched on this before in a few posts so I'll briefly describe my situation again.  My weight-loss happened over a 14 month period.  So about 125 pounds lost in 14 months.  It was pretty consistent throughout that 14 months but it slowed right down near the end.  As we know from my recent six week Phase 1 experiment, it's next to impossible for me to lose weight right now, but my body continues to change and firm up.  I started running six months after I started the diet and I lost the first 60 pounds (I weighed about 230 when I started running).  Prior to running I did no other form of exercise (except take the stairs at work when I was in the office which was about 2x per week).

This is my most recent side view belly pick from a couple of
months ago.  Not too bad.  I'll do updated ones as soon as
I'm not feeling so "bloated" (read, it's that time of month).
And I'm gonna be hula hooping too!

I am actually very surprised by the lack of loose skin I have.  I have some on my upper outer thighs (saddle bags), my stomach is a touch flabby, and my boobs definitely need a good lift.  I can live with all that.  I know with more body strengthening (core exercises) and running, my body will continue to change and firm up.  What I will need surgical intervention on is my upper arms.  They are extremely flabby and no amount of weights or exercise is going to fix that now.  I'll give it another year before I start looking into any kind of surgery for my upper arms.  I dream of wearing sleeveless tops one day and I want to be able to wave without slapping my own face with my unsightly bat wings!

Everyone is different though.  The best advice I can give anyone who is worried about excess skin during weight-loss is to get active.  I am convinced that running has played a pivotal role in my body composition.  I lost 100+ pounds when I was in my 20's and I can assure you that I was much more flabby and loose skinned then than I am now.  Which you wouldn't think possible since I'm significantly older (by 15 years), have gone through a full-term pregnancy and had a c-section. The only differences are that I did not exercise at all the first  time around, lost the weight super fast (under a year), and was on a very restrictive low calorie diet.  In case you're wondering, I gained the weight back as fast as I lost it.  Diet and exercise together are really important!  And you need to eat good wholesome food to fuel your body for activity.  No processed carbs required. I'm training for my second half marathon and I have never "carb loaded".  I feel fine during my long runs.  Lots of protein after strenuous activity is super important for muscle repair.  So get moving! Find any activity you enjoy and just do it. A lot!

Despite the violence that happened yesterday, my dream to run Boston has not diminished.  I will continue to run in races.  I will continue to train hard.  Running is something I am passionate about, something I am good at, and something I love. I am getting faster and stronger and nothing will knock me down or break my spirit.  I will continue to run for my health and my happiness.  I will continue run for the people who have lost their lives and limbs and will never run again.  I will continue to run for Boston.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

At goal and Paleo!

I feel like I haven't blogged in ages!  It's only been a few days, but my last post was pretty lame due to technical difficulties.  What a week. If I could have a redo, I certainly would.  Jules was sick from Monday night until Friday!  And hubby was not feeling 100% either.  I was okay (knock wood) which surprises me since I cleaned up most of the vomit/diarrhea! Besides the constant illness and the anxiety that I feel when my little guy is not feeling well, I had the worst week of running I can remember in a long time.

I only look happy because my ordeal is over!

Out of the five runs I did this past week, I was only dry during two. Yesterday and today!  And I'm used to running in the rain.  But running in the rain, with strong winds when the temperature is hovering at 0C is trying on even my best days. It was raining sideways in my face for Pete's sake. I think I'm pretty tough and I don't balk at a 6K run, but the 6, 7 and 8K runs I did in the pouring rain felt like the longest runs ever!  I was soaked to the skin when I got home and needed to strip down at my front door.  That's how drenched I was.  I honestly think I would have rather run in the sub zero temperatures than repeat the week of running I did last week!  Anywho, moving on.

Friday started out like a fine enough day.  Hamilton didn't get hit with the bad winter weather that Environment Canada had promised.  I was fine with that.  It was just wet and raining and cold.  I headed out to Peterborough and the driving was fine.  The roads were wet, but I didn't feel like they were slippery at all. I took my time and made my way up the 115.  Peterborough was not as blessed as the Greater Toronto area.  The trees and ground were covered with a pretty thick layer of ice.  As I'm driving along, I felt my car jerk a few times.  Then just as I make it into Peterborough, my engine light goes on and the entire dash lights up.  I have just enough time to pull over before the car just stops.  Now I'm on the side of the road, and it's freezing rain.  I call CAA and although they put me as a priority and I was supposed to get service within 20 minutes, it takes about an hour for Bob's towing to get to me.  Incidentally when my car broke down in Peterborough last spring, Bob's towing picked me up then too.  That time it was Jake who helped me, this time it was Ken.

My car on the back of the flat bed:(

It sucked to be me on Friday!  Not only did I have to cancel with my client for the second time that week (the first was Tuesday when I stayed home with sick Julien), but I had to be towed from Peterborough to Scarborough.  Once I made it to the garage, my mechanics were able to tell me what was wrong with the car (frayed wires to something), but couldn't get the parts there on time because it was 3pm on a Friday afternoon.  That meant I had to leave my car there and hop on the Scarborough LRT to Kennedy Station then head on over to Union Station and grab the Go bus to Hamilton.  I hadn't eaten since breakfast and had no food on me because I was supposed to have lunch with my client in Peterborough.  I ended up buying an apple and almonds in Union Station which tided me over until I made it home.  Once I got home I made salmon cakes and broccoli for dinner.

It's been a while since I was on the subway.
The new cars are just one very long car.
You can walk from one end of the entire train
to the other.

So I have officially switched over to a Paleoish diet.  It's similar to Dr. Poon's, but cleaner.  No artificial sweeteners, no dairy, nothing processed, no legumes (including peanuts).  Lots of lean protein, fish, seafood, vegetables, fruit and nuts.  I'm making a couple of concessions.  I'm not giving up cream in my coffee, and I'm still eating natural peanut butter before long runs.  It gives me the energy I need and I digest it well.  So there you have it!  I's easy and structured and I pretty much eat that way anyway.  No more treats on weigh-in days, and that's okay.  It was all processed and artificial anyway, and I don't need it.

I don't think I'm going to go back to the clinic to get weighed anymore.  I'm going to monitor my weight myself.  I'll continue to weigh in bi-weekly and just record it here.  I weigh-in every other Wednesday with a group of women at work anyway.  I'll just keep doing that and record my results on my blog and Facebook Page.  I wasn't feeling the love the last time I was at the clinic and don't wish to receive the stern "I think you're not being truthful with me" look from Dr. Stephen again.  I don't really need any negativity in my life.  And since I feel good about all my food choices and my diet overall, I don't need to be accountable to anyone else but me!

Thank goodness this happened right at the end of my run.
I had to wait 15 minutes for the train to pass!

Yesterday I had a pretty packed day.  I got up and ran 8K pretty early in the morning.  My run was pretty solid until the end when I was delayed by a train.  That sucked, but it only cut half a kilometer off my total run time.  Afterwards, I met a couple of old college friends for lunch in Toronto.  I hadn't seen them for about three years. Man the time passes quickly.  They both look the same to me as they did in college.  Young and beautiful as ever!  Happily, I do not look the same.  I was probably at my heaviest for a time when we were in college together.  Sometimes I forget how different I look to people who haven't seen me in a long time.  Old friends and acquaintances usually act differently with me until they see that I've only changed on the outside.  I'm still the same inside.

After lunch, I headed back home for a few hours, then I was off to dinner with Dawn and Monica. Since our half marathon clinic finished back in March, we don't see each other as much.  I've still been running on weekends with Monica, but Dawn is training for her 200K Ride to Conquer Cancer. We went to the Bean Bar, had some good eats (grilled chicken with asparagus and a glass of red wine) and caught up.  I'll be seeing much more of Monica starting this week.  Our 10K clinic that we are co-instructing starts this Thursday.  This means I'll start running a couple of evenings a week again.  I'm gonna miss my morning runs!

This morning I had to get in my long run for the week.  I'm in week 11 of my half marathon training for the Niagara Women's Half Marathon on June 2nd.  Monica was going to do my long run with me, but she had a crappy sleep last night and wasn't able to make it.  So I was solo for my 16K. This is the furthest I have ever run alone.  I ran up the escarpment and continued to follow the path right to the end.  It  let me off in a parking lot somewhere on the Hamilton Mountain, but I have no idea where I was.  I had to run down a huge hill before the path ended which pissed me off.  I had just run up the escarpment for 6K, ran on flat ground for about 1.5K, then ran down a pretty steep hill for about 500m.  I cursed the whole way down because I knew I would have to turn around and run right back up the damn hill again.  I had never run to the end of the path before and it was exactly 8K from my front door to the end of the path.

The end of the path. No idea where Arbour Road is.

When I got home I was starving.  I stretched and had a tablespoon of natural peanut butter and a hard boiled egg before cleaning myself up.  I made a recovery lunch of salad with oil and vinegar dressing and salmon and  another hard boiled egg.  It was pretty boring but filled me right up and I felt much better after eating.  I felt light headed once during my run and did have a couple of energy gummies.  I'm sure they are not Paleo, but I need that shit when I'm doing long runs!  My toes cramped again at 13K.  I am counting the days until I get my orthotics.  There is nothing more frustrating than having to walk out toe cramps.  It really messes with my pace!

After lunch I went to my girlfriend Elin's place for a glass of wine and to show her and her hubby how to make the sauteed cabbage I eat constantly.  Julien is feeling good again, so he wanted to play with Elin's son and the boys had a good time outside on this lovely and sunny day!  Tomorrow it's supposed to be 19C.  I'm glad it's a rest day.  I have no spring/summer running gear.  Thank goodness I get the very generous employee discount at the Running Room.  This will be the last time I'll be retiring running gear because it's too big for me. I'm officially calling myself at goal!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

My internet sucks!

Not amused!

I am not a happy camper. My internet is down and I won't be able to post until Saturday. Sucks to be me. Julien's had a relapse and hubby's not feeling great. Wonderful. I better not get sick! That would not bode well for my training!!!! Very short post today because doing this on my Samsung is quite onerous.  I leave you with a shot of tonight's dinner. Oh! Almost forgot. Got fitted for orthotics this morning. I get them in two weeks. I'm so pumped that the pain and crampy toes will soon be gone. Marathon training here I come!!!!!

Cajun salmon, cumin cabbage, lemon and garlic asparagus.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

A lifestyle change is forever, not just for now

My sick Peanut!

Today sucked!  My little guy was home from school with pretty bad diarrhea   I had to stay home from work to take him to the doctor and make sure he got some electrolytes in him.  I was up all last night every two hours 'cos poor Jules had to go to the washroom.  Poor peanut.   It broke my heart to see him in so much pain.  He's doing better now, but a sick child completely threw my day off.  I didn't run this morning.  Instead I ran this evening in the pouring rain.  Pretty unpleasant, but I had to getter done!  I also didn't make my weigh-in with Dr. Stephen.  I did weigh myself on my home scale and guess what?  I weigh 168.  Exactly the same as I did two weeks ago.  I guess that this is what I'm supposed to weigh.  I was at 166 a week ago.  When I was consciously doing maintenance a couple months ago, my weight fluctuated between 165 and 168.  Makes no difference if I do Phase 1 or 2, I pretty much stay the same.  I know my body continues to change and I'll keep taking comparisons at the same weight every few months.  I have less than a week of Phase 1 left.  I'm looking most forward to having fruit again, spaghetti squash and almonds.  It takes so little to make me happy now!

Soaked after my evening run but I don't care.
I did it!

I got an email from a reader yesterday who asked me how I balance life and fitness and motherhood and work and all the other million tasks I have in a day.  A great question and one that I've touched on many times in different posts.  I think that in order to clear things up for inquiring minds, I'll answer Sandra's questions in a post.  This is for you Sandra!

So, Sandra asked what a typical day looked like for me.  I should start off by saying that I work five days a week in Toronto (One hour commute with NO traffic) or surrounding area.  I run 5 days a week (Monday and Friday are my rest days), I will start  teaching a new running clinic next Thursday which means I have to commit to Wednesday and Thursday evenings and Sunday mornings for the next 10 weeks (it's worth the employee discount at the Running Room), I have physio twice per week (3x when I'm training hard, which will be happening in the next few weeks), I have 30 minutes of core exercises I do per day for physio, and I'm a mother to a very active 5-year-old boy!  And that's not everything.  I haven't even mentioned the house chores!

So a typical day for me starts at 5:30am.  I'm out the door by 5:45 at the latest Tuesday to Thursday for my run.  I run anywhere from 6-8 kilometers depending on where I am in my training. Even though Monday and Friday are rest days, I still wake up at 5:30 and make myself lie in bed for a half hour before heading downstairs for coffee.  I'm back from my run by 6:30am, I stretch, eat, shower and dress for the day.  I'm usually out my door by 8am.  Earlier if I have an early meeting (then my day starts at 5am).  I'm lucky because my hubby gets Jules ready for school. They're usually just getting up when I'm leaving.  Neither has any idea that I've already run and been up for 2.5 hours.

I'm back from work by 6:30 pm (unless I have physio or running clinic).  If I have other commitments, I may not get home till 8pm or later.  Just in time to put Julien to bed.  It sucks, but I limit those nights to only twice per week.  I blog on Tuesdays, Thursdays and either Saturday or Sunday (both if something exciting is going on ie: a race).  Weekends are spent running (in the morning still), doing laundry, grocery shopping, meal prep, socializing, playing with Julien, family stuff!  My life is pretty boring and mundane, but it works for me!

The only way I can make this lifestyle work for me is to make everything routine.  Running is part of my routine.  Meal prep and grocery shopping is part of my routine.  I spend a lot of time planning meals, making lists, purchasing food, making meals.  I have two slow cookers I use at full force on the weekend and a time or two during the week as well.  I love my slow cookers and don't know what I'd do without them. Something that always annoys me is when I hear people claim that eating healthy is too expensive.  I go through flyers and do price matching at either Walmart or No Frills.  It pays to take the time and plan.  Just this week, I got six huge boneless, skinless chicken breasts for under ten bucks!  That is a deal.  My freezer is full now!

I can't make excuses and I can't be lazy about my lifestyle.  Dropping the ball will get me back to 300 pounds in no time.  Diet with exercise is important.  You can't have one without the other. You can't out-exercise a bad diet!  I have made the very conscious choice to not return to any of my old eating habits or my sedentary lifestyle.  No more processed carbs or sugar.  No more dairy.  I've been without dairy for almost six weeks and feel great!  I'm not one of those people who can eat whatever they want just so long as they are physically active. You wanna know why? Because what would happen if for some reason I could no longer run?  Then where would I be? Three hundred pounds again, that's where.

I've been toying with going Paleo, and Lynda kindly pointed out that red wine is allowed on the Paleo diet.  I am currently reading up on it and I am sold.  Hubby is going there with me.  Although the boy won't be eating Paleo, there are lots of meals that we can easily make family friendly by simply adding a dish that Julien would enjoy and that hubby and I won't eat.  Julien will see us eating very healthy and it's bound to rub off on him.  He's an impressionable young mind.  As long as he sees us fit and healthy, he will follow.  He's already asking me when I'm going to teach him how to run.  We'll sign him up for soccer first!

So there you have it.  This is how I balance it all.  I make my fitness and diet a priority and it's just second nature now.  I'm not ever caught unprepared.  It's definitely and effort, but an effort that is completely doable if you really want it.  If you're ready to make the commitment, put in the time and make yourself a priority, you will get the results you want.  And remember, the changes you make are not just for now, they have to be forever.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Fortunes, salmon cakes and Paleo?

My fortune from yesterday.  I actually really loved getting this one!

Can you tell I had nothing for a title?  You wanna know what gets my knickers in a knot?  When people either say to my face, or through someone else, that there is no way that during the time that I have changed my lifestyle, that I have not "fallen off the wagon" and had a full out cheat. Apparently, it's just too hard for some people to fathom that someone could be so committed to their health.  I have actually been called a liar in a round about way a few times.  I mean, I don't care what others think, but I have been very committed to my weight-loss efforts over the past year and a half, and have paid attention to my eating 100%. That being said, I have struggles just like everyone else.  I have had my biggest issue with eating too much of a good thing.  While I was on maintenance, I had to be very careful with nuts and could only eat them in controlled portions.  I can't purchase bulk nuts ever!

I have always planned ahead and because of this, I have been able to stay on plan in every situation I have been in.  I'm not saying it has been a total walk in the park.  Planning ahead takes a lot of effort and it sucks big time in some situations (ie: celebrations).  But I'd rather go hungry than eat off plan.  I don't get food like McDonald's or other greasy stuff if there's nothing else available.  But I also don't recall ever being in that situation.  And quite frankly, if I were to eat McDonald's at this time, I'd be on the toilet stat!  I know my stomach would not even be able to process that crap.  Or processed sugar or carbs for that matter.  I've been without it for too long.

I have one week left of Phase 1 to do.  I'm moving onto my version of Phase 2 on the 13th of April. It is my comfortable eating place, and that is where I'll stay.  It works for me.  I won't ever really go onto Phase 3 of the diet because that's maintenance and includes things like bread and pasta and rice.  I'll likely never have those things again, and I'm okay with that.  Those were my binge/trigger foods and they will not be making an appearance back into my life.  I'd just rather not go there. And even though I thought at one time that I could never live without them, I have for a year and a half and I'm fine.  The world did not come to an end!  I maintain well at my version of Phase 2, so that will be my permanent happy eating place.  I've toyed with going Paleo, but I'll maintain for a while before making that sort of commitment   It's not that different than how I eat on Phase 2, and I truly think I will be staying away from dairy permanently, so it shouldn't be too difficult a transition if I decide to go that way. The hardest thing would be giving up my red wine...

Regardless of what the scale says on Tuesday for my weigh-in, I know for sure I have gotten smaller.  The one person (besides my husband) who would know for certain would be my massage therapist.  He hadn't seen me for two weeks and when I saw him the other day, he told me that he could see that I've lost a bunch of weight.  He told me I have more pronounced muscle definition and I was definitely leaner.  He would know.  No one sees or touches my body the way that he does (in a professional manner of course).

Beautiful running weather.

This morning I woke to a -6C temperature for my 8K.  I bitched and moaned about the cold, but the sun was out and by the time I got out to the rail trail, it warmed up a few degrees and I had a fabulous run.  It was one of those runs where I wanted to just keep on going.  I was watching my shadow as I ran and although my outer thighs are still pretty wobbly, I liked watching them because it was a huge motivator to keep on going.  Something else I noticed was that my inner thighs have a very pronounced space between them.  That is also a huge motivator for me because I never want to see them rub together again.  The main reason I'd get rid of pants when I was morbidly obese was because I wore my inner thighs out.  NEVER AGAIN!

After my run this morning I made salmon cakes with left over salmon from a couple of nights ago. They were pretty delish.  I had about a cup and a half of salmon, two eggs, 2 tbsp Dijon mustard, 1/4 cup of the Flax Rye Bread Mix from the Ontario Nutrition Store (I use it as filler for all meatballs, burgers, meatloaf), green onion (sliced thin) and half salt and pepper to taste.  I mixed the whole thing up, formed into patties and fried them in a bit of canola oil.  I served mine on sauteed cabbage, hubby made his into a wrap.  Yummo!  I will definitely be making those again.

Salmon cakes.

My filler.

I was quick thinking enough to make sugar-free jello this afternoon.  I'm so looking forward to eating it tonight as my snack.  I'm not gonna lie, I miss fruit terribly.  The jello kills my craving for fruit.  Tomorrow is my long run.  14K!  I'm gonna have to go a bit Phase 2 (I'll have my hard boiled eggs and 2 tbsp of natural peanut butter) to fuel up for my run and may need to have an energy gummie or two during my run.  It's very hard to stick to strict Phase 1 during 1/2 marathon training long runs.  Thank goodness there's only a week left before I move onto my happy eating place aka Phase 2.  And I'm really looking forward to a glass of red wine!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The secret to weight-loss

Looking dazed and confused...
like I just saw a possum!

The last few mornings have not been pleasant runs for me.  It's freaking cold at 5:45am!!!!!  Spring my a**!  I'm so done with the cold that I'm about to put a hit out on that damn groundhog who promised us an early spring.  I mean, yes, there are signs of spring everywhere.  The lighter mornings, the (shudder) possums I see during my early morning runs, the birds singing so lovely...Just warm up for the love of all that is holy already!  It has been a long and cold "running" winter.  I want to stop wearing my 3 season jacket, and just run in a long sleeved top in the mornings!  Is that too much to ask?  Apparently so.

I have been eating like a hog lately.  Well, maybe just today.  I ran this morning, had my usual hard boiled eggs and coffee for breakfast, then wanted to eat my own limbs by mid morning.  I had an early lunch of grilled chicken and broccoli, then actually walked to Rabba and purchased a half chicken for a late afternoon snack at 4:30pm.  I ate the whole thing at my desk before driving from Toronto to Hamilton for my 7pm physio appointment.  I just finished my dinner of baked salmon with salad.  I'm finally feeling satisfied  but wished I had made sugar-free jello last night.  I feel like having something sweet.  I'll just wait it out and go to bed early for a change.  That's mainly how I deal with cravings, I go to sleep.  I can't obsess over food while I'm sleeping!  By morning my craving will be gone.

Tuesday is my next weigh-in with Dr. Stephen and I have no idea where I am weight wise.  I don't weigh myself in between weigh-ins.  And, at this point, I don't care.  I have been on Phase 1 for almost 5 weeks.  The only thing that has happened is that I got smaller.  I went down a whole size. After my last weigh-in where I gained 1.5 pounds of "fat", I realized that I just may not be able to drop anymore weight.  I'm okay with that.  I know I'm gaining muscle, even if the doctor suggests I'm not.  I've been running 40K per week while eating lean protein, leafy greens, and veggies grown above ground! A lean runner's body may not be in my future.  Or it may just happen much slower than I'd like.

I was on maintenance prior to choosing to go back on Phase 1.  Dr. Stephen insisted I go on maintenance saying that since I was "athletic", I'd likely never reach goal because the scale wouldn't take into account my muscle mass.  It's very confusing the mixed messages I get. Anywho, I'm interested to see what the scale will say on Tuesday.  Whatever it says, I am at peace with myself.  My size 7 pants are getting looser.

I'm done Phase 1 on the 13th.  I'll go back to eating Phase 2 at that time.  I'll just be starting to get into running longer distances, speed work and hill training for my half marathon in June. I'm looking forward to fruit again, but I think I'll keep dairy out of my diet permanently.  I just feel better dairy free, and I'm not that attached to cheese, or yogurt.  I gave up processed carbs and sugar for good, I can give up dairy no problem. I'll just be adding fruit (minus bananas), all veggies (except white potatoes), and some nuts after the 13th.  Oh and of course, red wine on the weekend.  After all, I've got to have something to look forward to!

Oh, the vulgar language!!!!  But, it's how I feel when people ask me what
my secret to weight-loss is.  There is no secret!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Stripped again!!!!

I know I look constipated, but that's a pained expression!

Hope everyone had a Happy Easter!  Mine was pretty decent.  I got up and did my long run (12K) for the week.  I got to run in my happy place.  Up the Niagara Escarpment.  When I got to the top, I almost got mowed down by the Stoney Creek Running Room half marathon clinic.  I ran down the escarpment with them for about 5.5K.  It was nice to run with such a large group of people at the same pace.  We dominated the rail trail Sunday morning!  Half marathon training has officially begun!

Afterwards, we went to my in-laws for Easter dinner.  I ate more chicken breast and salad than should  be allowed.  I was hungry after my run!  I'm sure I decimated an entire population of chickens single handedly.  It was great  to spend time with family.  And Jules got to play with his cousins, so he was very happy!  I lucked out because my little guy does not like chocolate.  He likes candy, but sparingly.  He'll eat a few gummies or suck on a sucker for a few minutes, then call it a day.  What a relief!  He's also not into cookies, cakes or any baked goods.  My husband's on cloud nine.  Any chocolate that Julien gets, goes in the freezer for him to eat at his leisure.  A gentle reminder to my hubby that running does not eliminate bad eating!

Yesterday was still a holiday for me.  I had a four day weekend.  I actually slept in all four days. By sleep in, I mean I wasn't up before dawn.  I was still up by 7:30ish, but that's sleeping in for me.  I did however get up at 5:30 this morning to run in the frigid cold.  Minus 12C with the windchill!  Are you kidding me?  I thought that spring had sprung.  Even though I had put them away on Good Friday, I had to drag out the winter mitts and toques again!  I see it's supposed to be nice again by Thursday.  Fingers crossed the milder weather sticks this time.

I registered hubby and I for a bunch of races on Sunday (before the prices went up April 1st).  I'm running the Chocolate Race in Port Dalhousie on Mother's Day.  It was my first 5K ever, so it's a nostalgic race for me.  I'm running with Beverly for sure and have invited Tanya to join us.  She's still thinking on it.  The hubby and boy will come with me for the race and we can make a day of it. Niagara Falls is not much further!  I also officially registered for my next 1/2 marathon.  I'm running the Niagara Falls Women's Half Marathon on June 2nd, the day before my 43rd birthday.  I'm excited about this one because my former running coach and mentor Carol will be running the same race.  I'm aiming for the sub 2:15  finish.  My feet better be pain free by then!

Hubby and I are both running the Meredith Hagan Inspiration Run on June 22nd.  That was an awesome and very inspiring race last year.  I'm doing the 10K this year.  It's the goal race for the 10K clinic I'm co-instructing with Monica beginning the 18th of April.  And finally, hubby's registered for his first half marathon.  The Niagara Falls International Half Marathon on October 27th.  The weekend after (November 3rd), I'm running my first full marathon, the Road2Hope.  We'll also fit a shorter race in there somewhere over the summer.  But there you have it.  My running dossier for the next eight months.  I'm telling you, running is an expensive hobby to have!

I had physio tonight.  I got a week off because Graham was in Cuba, but now we're back to full force physio once again.  My hamstring is about 99% healed.  I'm doing hamstring curls on the exercise ball and a bunch of other core exercises so I can continue to strengthening my glutes and lower back.  Now the focus is on my feet and crampy toes.  I have an orthotic assessment made for the 12th of April.  It's about an hour long because my running gait and movement will be assessed once again.  My feet will also be scanned for othotics.  I'm anxious and excited all at once.  Excited that it will correct my crampy toes once and for all and anxious that it won't.

At tonight's physio appointment, Graham thought it would be fun to strip my feet.  It hurt!  A lot! Mark, my massage dude, was going to strip my feet a week and a half ago, but said he'd put it off till after The Bay race.  I'm seeing him on Friday, and he doesn't need to strip them at all now! Graham beat him to the punch!  It was extremely unpleasant, but not as bad as the time before last when Mark stripped my left calf.  And the upside was that Graham used a lot of lotion on my feet and they're super soft now!  The sh*t I do for running!

I would hate his job.  I don't like feet!